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The Atkins Diet – Why It’s My Personal Choice
From the time I was a kid, through the glorious 20s (thankfully no pun behind me) and into my early 30s (before I had my son), keeping my weight off was never a problem. I’ve always trusted that if I watch what I eat, if my weight creeps up, all it takes is a little non-stressful exercise to get me back to my ideal weight.
But things are changing
After my son was born (and gained 60 pounds during pregnancy), my thyroid – which had always been rocky – decided to more or less give up the ghost. In fact, when I was about 21 years old, I was diagnosed with an underactive thyroid (that’s the one where you gain weight more easily and have other unpleasant symptoms). I religiously did my yearly blood tests and took that little pill every day. However, even that changed after the birth. A normal thyroid ranges from 0.4 to 0.6, mine was 10.0 – a sure sign that it has dipped and is no longer regulating my body effectively.
So enter the Diet Loop
Even at 16, obsessed with keeping my figure slim, I was “inventing” my own diets. I remember one was nothing but boiled eggs, toast and something to drink. And I lost 18 pounds in two weeks doing it (eggs are the secret).
Later in life I went on The Scarsdale Diet. I can tell you that it really works, but over time you really start to hate tomatoes. Meat is definitely on the menu with Scarsdale, along with plenty of vegetables and even fruit. It’s really balanced. You just don’t like anything that smells “sweet”. Oh, and I can’t stand black coffee.
Then it was on to the “diet in a box” variation. Sure they work, but after a week or so the smell of the cardboard box along with your food will reduce your appetite a bit anyway… maybe that’s how it works. And yes, the combination of the right amount of carbohydrates, proteins and fats is the real secret.
Which led me to… the Atkins diet.
I didn’t just jump on Atkins. I read the book cover to cover and researched some of it myself. Good, solid scientific facts – along with an eye-opening look at the lobbyist who tells us what’s good to eat and what’s not (read how high-sugar cereal makers threaten us that eggs aren’t good for us, only their products are the best).
Ok, research behind me and my solid Atkins diet in hand, I cleaned out my kitchen of all the nasty (but awesome) goodness and started the 14 day portion of the diet.
Sure, the scale moved (and still does), but more importantly and almost immediately, my clothes start to “feel” again.
You will stay on the 14 day induction diet (duh) for 14 days. However, if you are really overweight, you can continue with less than 20 grams of carbs for longer. And yes, if you are severely overweight, it is still healthy.
I won’t continue to go into detail about the different phases of this “life time, change your eating habits” diet. It’s all in the book and I recommend you read it. So many people I meet tell me, “But that’s not a good diet. You’re eating too much ___ or ____. And that’s not healthy.”
My very first question to people who post their negative comments is, “Have you read the book?”
The answer when something really ridiculous is thrown at me is a resounding… no. However, with an air of unreliable authority, they claim to be right. I just smile and keep moving. I’m thin, more often than not (and I don’t mean that harshly), they need some serious weight.
To give you an idea of Atkins, I started again (yes, I know it’s probably a lifelong way of eating, but when have we, the American population, ever done anything completely?) late last year (around August 2005) I was at a miserable 30 pounds sitting on my butt that needed to be removed before there were 50 or more of them. Pretzels and high carb snacks (where you just grab a quick handful) are my downfall.
By February 2006 I had lost (and am still maintaining) 33 pounds. That’s seven months of eating the right combinations of protein, fat, and carbohydrates as outlined in the Atkins diet plan. At an average of just under 5 pounds per month or 1.25 pounds per week (give or take), it’s a healthy approach to losing weight while actually keeping it off.
I even came up with my own milkshake that works like a charm. Ice, Carb Hood chocolate drink (chocolate, of course), some Splenda and/or sugar free Torani hazelnuts, and a can of Atkin’s Chocolate Royale. It fills you up, is loaded with vitamins and minerals, and best of all, works like a charm when you lose weight.
So now you know my weight loss and weight loss story. But before I go, I would also like to bring your mind to this charming reality.
Why are tons of ads popping up all of a sudden saying “order your meal in a box?” What’s the first thing they say to you? All about the glycemic ratio, of course, and if you do it in the right ratio for you, “the pounds just melt away!”
Yes, they are right. But these same people, along with all the miracle pill manufacturers and the “health conscience” community, until recently, were the same people screaming at you that the Atkins diet is unhealthy!
Duh… Atkins wrote and implemented the correct carbohydrate combination diet decades ago. At least he has decades of research and true stories to back up what he’s been saying all along.
Combine the right foods for everyone and everyone can lose weight. Take a walk to get your butt off the couch and moving, and you have a sure recipe for losing weight and keeping it off for the rest of your life.
Find what works for you, do it, stick with it and you can be healthy and as trim and fit as comes naturally to YOU.
(c) Theresa Cahill 2006 – All rights reserved
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